Friday, August 31, 2012

Blue Moon and Blue at the Pumps;Calvillo Sets CFL Record

Friday night saw the last Blue Moon until 2015.A blue moon is when there are two full moons in one month.It doesn't look any different from a normal full moon.It's a calendar oddity that makes for an interesting little experience.It's free of charge-good news for the cash-strapped American consumer,who is suffering the highest gas prices for Labor Day weekend in history.
The average price for gasoline is now 3.80 a gallon.Prices rose up to 15 cents in one day.In Illinois and California,gas is going for over 4.00 a gallon.It's on account of a number of factors,including Hurricane Isaac shutting down oil rigs and a pipeline;a refinery fire;and the expensive ethanol blend that must be used in summer.By the holidays,gas should go back down to about 3.50 a gallon.
Speaking of the moon,let's pause to remember Astronaut Neil Armstrong,the first human being to set foot on the moon,who died this week in Ohio at age 82.His private funeral was Friday with hundreds of close friends attending.This Blue Moon is dedicated to him.
Another type of hero,quarterback Anthony Calvillo,40,who plays for the Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League,set a new record tonight as the Alouettes edged the BC Lions 30-25 at McGill University stadium in Montreal.Calvillo is the first quarterback in CFL history to toss for 300 yards in eight straight games.The game was broadcast live on the NBC Sports Network.Possibly the unassuming Calvillo is the greatest quarterback in the history of  all of North American football.
The Alouettes and Lions are leading their respective divisions with a record of 6-3 each.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Tiger Woods in the Hunt;TS Isaac Getting Near

It was a sunny day at Bethpage Black in Farmingdale,New York as Tropical Storm Isaac drew closer to South Florida,darkening skies at Key West,the southernmost tip of the United States.Sergio Garcia of Spain and America's Nick Watney shared the lead of The Barclays,the first of the four PGA Tour Playoffs  for the FedEx Cup,at the difficult and classic public golf course,part of Bethpage State Park on Long Island.
Each of the park's five courses has a color for a name.Bethpage Black was designed in the 1930s and features numerous huge bunkers with amoeba shapes.The greens of the lengthy course were drying fast,making them firm and bouncy.Garcia and Watney managed the tough old course better than most,ending the second round at eight under par.Tiger Woods finished just three strokes back at -5.American Phil Mickelson and Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland just made the cut with even par,eight strokes back.
Snoopy 1,the famous MetLife blimp,provided views of the eccentric bunkers,which reach an extreme at the eighteenth hole,flanking it with their surreal menace.Garcia was coming off last week's victory at the Wyndham Championship with a lot of momentum,while Watney had been having a nondescript season so far.
Down in Florida,tropical storm conditions are expected for Monday and Tuesday.Coastal bay flooding may be a threat on Tuesday and Wednesday,with hurricane conditions possible.A Tropical Storm Warning and a Hurricane Watch have been posted for South Florida.It was already raining heavily in Miami at an NFL preseason game between the Miami Dolphins and Atlanta Falcons.The Falcons beat the Dolphins 23-6.
TS Isaac is currently blowing at 70 mph,moving NW at 14 mph and will soon cross Haiti,then go back over open water before crossing Cuba.It could be a category 1 hurricane by Monday evening.Heavily affected areas could range from Mississippi to Georgia.Category 1 is the weakest hurricane.On the twentieth anniversary of mighty Hurricane Andrew,TS Isaac bears scant resemblance to the devastating hurricane.
Update:At Bethpage Black,Sergio Garcia took sole possession of the lead of The Barclays,finishing round 3 at ten under par.Nick Watney was in second place on the leader board at -8,while Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson were in 10th place with their four under par.Mickelson had improved from his even par second round by shooting a fine 67 on Saturday.
Tropical Storm Isaac ravaged Haitian refugee camps,killing at least seven people,and shifted a bit westward.About 10,000 people in the Dominican Republic were dispaced when 724 homes were damaged.At last check,it was a 60 mph storm,moving NW at 17mph.It is expected to cross close to Key West,so the Key West High School shelter is filling up. By Sunday evening,it will be a category 1 hurricane,with at least 75 mph winds,as it traverses the Gulf of Mexico.Landfall will be Tuesday evening at a minimum of category 2,with at least 105 mph winds,somewhere between Mississippi and Alabama on the Gulf Coast,according to the latest forecast model.

Hurricane Andrew's 20th anniversary a reminder of storms' power

Hurricane Andrew's 20th anniversary a reminder of storms' power

Friday, August 17, 2012

Hurricane Season At Apex;Yankees Hit Five Roundbaggers

Hurricane season is at its statistical peak now.There are several tropical systems active in the Western Hemisphere.Tropical Storm Helene will soon make landfall on Mexico's east coast,if it has not already done so.Tropical Storm Gordon is moving in an easterly direction,away from North America.It may strike the Azores and then Portugal about mid-week if it continues on its present track.
Another system,a tropical wave,is moving off West Africa toward the Caribbean.It will be carefully scrutinised by meteorologists next week.
Rain pelted Yankee Stadium in the Bronx,New York Friday night for a brief time,but Curtis Granderson hit a home run anyway.His teammate Nick Swisher hit two more,one from each side of the plate,and Russell Martin added a fourth as the New York Yankees slammed the Boston Red Sox 6-4.Derek Jeter also homered,making a team total of five for the night.Jayson Nix batted in the other two runs with a single.
It doesn't look as though the Red Sox will make the postseason this year,as they are in last place in the American League Wild Card race.That would be the third consecutive season they have failed to advance to the playoffs.The first place Yankees are coasting into the postseason with their remarkable firepower,smiling all the way.

Friday, August 10, 2012

London Olympics Notebook:Paige McPherson Wins Taekwondo Bronze-plus the battle of the Russians

American Paige McPherson,21,won the bronze medal in the women's 67kg,or welterweight,taekwondo class Friday.McPherson took the United States' eighth Olympic medal in the fighting sport,defeating Slovenia's Franka Anic 8-3.McPherson,the pride of Sturgis,South Dakota,was raised by her adoptive parents in a family of adopted children.
Kicking seems to be the heart of taekwondo,although punching may also yield points.It's not a sport the masses are too familiar with yet,but it's definitely exciting to watch-and listen to,as the competitors are quite vocal with their battle cries,if you will.
There is a definite culture of respect underpinning the fierce contests,with competitors and officials bowing to each other at various points.
The Bahamas won their first gold medal in history Friday,upsetting the US men in the 4x400 meter relay.The US had won gold in the relay at every Olympics since 1984.
In the overall  London Olympics medal count Friday,the US was first,with 94 total and 41 gold;China was second,with 81 total and 37 gold;and Russia held third place,with 63 total and 15 gold medals.
Update:In Olympics action Saturday,Mexico took the gold in men's soccer,beating Brazil 2-1.It was Mexico's first medal of any kind in soccer.
Russia took both gold and silver in the women's 20 km race walk,as Elena Lashmanova,20,bested the defending gold medalist Olga Kinistina,27.It was a thrilling finish on the Mall in London,with Lashmanova slowly yet steadily reeling Kinistina in,finally eclipsing her in the final moments of the race.Lashmanova blazed a new world record of 1:25:02 in the process,extinguishing the old record of 1:25:08.

Irish delight as Taylor wins gold - London 2012 Olympics

Irish delight as Taylor wins gold - London 2012 Olympics

Friday, August 3, 2012

London Olympics Notebook:Richards-Ross Cruises Through Quarter Final

Sanya Richards-Ross,the Jamaican American who has won Olympic gold twice on the US 4x400 meter relay team,is seeking to make her own mark at that distance in London.Richards-Ross made the quarter finals seem like a jog in the park Friday as she totally dominated the field to qualify for Saturday's semifinals.The Christian athlete gave all the glory to God.She is so thankful to be chasing her dream,she tweeted Friday night.1 race at a time!
Richards-Ross,who is married to NFL player Aaron Ross of the Jacksonville Jaguars,who has two Super Bowl rings from his time with the New York Giants,is considered one of the world's fastest women.She graduated from the University of Texas in 2006,having attended St.Thomas Aquinas High School in Ft.Lauderdale,Florida.
Jamaican-born athletes have been global leaders in track and field for a long time,and that tradition seems certain to continue at the London games as Richards-Ross and others pursue their dreams of talent realised.
In other Olympics action,the Canadian women defeated Great Britain in soccer quarterfinals 2-0 Friday,advancing to the Monday semifinals,where they will face off with Team USA,their longtime rivals.
The match will be broadcast at 2:45 pm Eastern.
French swimmer Florent Manaudou,21,came out of nowhere to clinch victory in the 50 meter freestyle.His older sister Laure,25,who won swimming gold at the Athens games in 2004, gave him a long congratulatory hug poolside,and he threw her his bouquet at the medals ceremony.France has won four swimming golds so far in London,which is more than the three they had won in their entire history.
The total medals leaders Friday were the US,43 and 21 gold;China,42 and 20 gold;and Russia,23 and 3 gold.
Update:While American Serena Williams took the gold medal in women's tennis on Saturday,defeating Russian Maria Sharapova,the Russian men overcame the US in volleyball,winning 3 sets to 2.Both teams are now 3-1 in Group B pool play.
Sanya Richards-Ross qualified for Sunday's 400 meter final.
Update 2:Sanya Richards-Ross won the gold medal in the 400 meter final on Sunday,joining her hands in prayer when she had crossed the finish line.
I've dreamt about this moment over and over the past four years.I'm just so blessed to have this experience,the Christian athlete said.Her parents,husband and cousin had witnessed her race in the stands.